To assess the concordance between the diagnostic tests for dry eye disease (DED) in a Nigerian hospital population.
The study was a hospital-based cross-sectional survey of adults (≥18 years) presenting at the eye clinic of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), Enugu; September–December, 2011. Participants' socio-demographic data were collected. Each subject was assessed for DED using the “Ocular Surface Disease Index” (OSDI) questionnaire, tear-film breakup time (TBUT), and Schirmer test. The intertest concordance was assessed using kappa statistic, correlation, and regression coefficients.
The participants (n=402; men: 193) were aged 50.1±19.1 standard deviation years (range: 18–94 years). Dry eye disease was diagnosed in 203 by TBUT, 170 by Schirmer test, and 295 by OSDI; the concordance between the tests were OSDI versus TBUT (Kappa, κ=−0.194); OSDI versus Schirmer (κ=−0.276); and TBUT versus Schirmer (κ=0.082). Ocular Surface Disease Index was inversely correlated with Schirmer test (Spearman ρ=−0.231, P<0.001) and TBUT (ρ=−0.237, P<0.001). In the linear regression model, OSDI was poorly predicted by TBUT (β=−0.09; 95% confidence interval (CI): −0.26 to −0.03, P=0.14) and Schirmer test (β=−0.35, 95% CI: −0.53 to −0.18, P=0.18).
At UNTH, there is poor agreement, and almost equal correlation, between the subjective and objective tests for DED. Therefore, the selection of diagnostic test for DED should be informed by cost-effectiveness and diagnostic resource availability, not diagnostic efficiency or utility.